“Contact Light” - A Tribute To MYOS Board Member, Dr. Buzz Aldrin

"Contact light."

Those were the first words uttered by a human after Apollo 11 landed on the moon. It was 45 years ago today that Apollo 11 started it's journey to the moon and back.

Buzz Aldrin was the lunar module pilot who made that statement. "Contact light" referred to a light inside the Apollo 11 landing module (The Eagle) that flickered as a probe at the bottom of the spacecraft touched the surface of the moon. It was the signal Buzz Aldrin gave to Mission Commander Neil Armstrong that he could turn off the Eagle's landing engines.

In seeking a smooth landing spot, The Eagle burned through so much fuel that it was nearly on empty 17 seconds before Aldrin called out "contact light." Any less fuel, and mission control would have ordered the jettison of the ship's landing stage, fire the ascent engine, and abort the landing.

Since then, "contact light" has become a motto for the ongoing enterprise of exploring space.

The Apollo 11 mission has captured the imagination of millions, including MYOS Chairman Dr. Robert J. Hariri and board member Dr. Peter Diamandis, both of whom continue to seek opportunities to continue the mission of manned space travel — including the goal of making it available to the average person — that Dr. Aldrin has lead since those first words were spoken on the moon.

We are honored to have Dr. Aldrin as a board member. With other grateful Americans and citizens of this planet we celebrate his courage and we are inspired by his determination to sustain our capacity to push boundaries in the pursuit of scientific discovery. As Dr. Aldrin notes: "Exploration is wired into our brains. If we can see the horizon, we want to know what's beyond."

Aldrin's explorative nature has inspired his interest in muscle loss, especially as it relates to zero-G situations. In zero-G, muscle loss can occur at a rate of up to 5% a week. Since the brain does not perceive an inherent "need" for muscles in zero-G environments, muscles undergo quicker atrophy in outer space than on Earth. The muscles used to fight gravity on earth — such as those in the calves and spine, used to maintain posture — can lose nearly 20% of their mass without use.

Aldrin's interest in zero-G muscle wasting has been instrumental to MYOS Corporation, as we continue to explore beyond the horizon in the field of muscle health.

Click here to learn more about Dr. Buzz Aldrin
Click here to read Dr. Aldrin's recent op-ed in TIME magazine